You gotta love all the stuff you can do with your phone these days (Ordering food and movie tixs! Finding parking spots! Using your phone as a flashlight! Draw Something!), but sending naked pictures of yourself might not be the best use of technology. A recent study from the Archives of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine says that sexting has gone up with young people, though the people taking part might not realize all the unpleasant consequences that could happen.
For the study, researchers checked out seven different high schools in Texas and found that just under 30% of the students have sexted. More students — over half — had been asked by someone else to send a sext.
There are definitely things to think about before you press “SEND.” For one thing, and this goes for all sex-related stuff, you should never be pressured into anything you don’t feel like doing. But even if you think you do want to send a sext, keep a few things in mind. You might want to share a pic with one person, but it’d be super easy for them to forward that pic. You hear this happen way too often: a couple is madly in love, they share intimate pictures, they break up, and then one or both of them share those pics just to upset their ex.
Many underage sexters also don’t think about the possible legal consequences. “The immediate impact may simply be harming one’s reputation,” said Dr. Eugene Beresin of Harvard Medical School. “However, in many states, teens are at risk for violating child pornography laws by posting nude photos of themselves or passing on such photos of others. In some instances, for example, kids have been charged with misdemeanors. More severe implications have been reported for such dissemination, such as being placed on sex-offender registries.”
So def. think before you send out any racy texts. And yes, a picture is worth 1,000 words but in this case, it’s not a good look!
Get the Sext Facts
A Thin Line has lots of info on how to set boundaries and make self-preservative choices. Flirt safely.
Draw Your Line
Take a stand specifically against digital abuse by putting yourself on the Thin Line map.